Marvel’s Sorcerer Supreme, Stephen Strange, is about to make his Marvel Cinematic Universe debut in Doctor Strange, but which Doctor Strange should we expect to see? Doctor Strange was introduced to the Marvel Universe in the 1960s, but he’s gone through many different incarnations in the years since.
If there’s one thing about Doctor Strange that has remained his consistent it's his origin. Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige says that’s one of the building blocks of Doctor Strange.
“His origin has always been, like Tony Stark's, relatively stable, relatively consistent, and we're certainly pulling from that,” Feige says in an on-set interview. “The arrogant New York neurosurgeon who's a bit of an ass and he's extremely arrogant, and who has a horrible accident, mangles his hands, his tools, and who loses his identity and loses his self and has a nice downward spiral before finding his way in a last-ditch effort in something he doesn't even really believe int to Nepal and to the people he will encounter, who will teach him and open his eyes to a whole other reality. We're certainly doing that origin. I think it's one of the coolest origins in our comics and certainly from a cinematic point of view, the most sort of interesting singular character journey, maybe since Iron Man 1, that we've plucked from the books.”
As for specific creative influences, Feige says Steve Ditko, co-creator of Doctor Strange as well as Spider-Man, is one of the most significant.
“I would say Steve Ditko and the art of Steve Ditko is a huge inspiration for us,” Feige says. “A lot of our interpretation of the multiverse and various dimensions come right out of all of the artwork from those early comics that Mr. Ditko did. We’re challenging our amazing visual effects vendors and visual effects supervisor. We're saying, ‘Let's put this on the screen.’ It's really weird and you don't want to turn away from that. You don't want to suddenly just turn it into a galactic cosmos. It needs to be strange. It needs to be weird. It needs to be absolutely inspired by those images.”
Another significant inspiration on Doctor Strange is Doctor Strange: The Oath, the five-issue limited series written by Brian K. Vaughan, the creator of Saga and Marvel’s Runaways who has also worked on Lost and Under the Dome, and illustrated by Marcos Martin. Published by Marvel Comics in 2007, Doctor Strange: The Oath has the essential interpretation of Doctor Strange for the modern Marvel era. Doctor Strange: The Oath also introduced the idea of Doctor Strange and Night Nurse, the character played in the film by Rachel McAdams, as a romantic couple.
“It's because that had a very fun tone to it,” Feige says of Doctor Strange: The Oath’s influence on the Doctor Strange movie, specifying that it was mostly about the tone. “Doctor Strange had a unique, fun voice. Even his voice in this movie, I'm not sure you would initially go, ‘I remember that in The Oath.’ Actually, there's a sequence from The Oath that directly inspired a sequence in this movie, which was the sequence that Scott actually included in his very earliest pictures to us.” Feige went on to clarify that Doctor Strange “is not an adaption of that story.”
Doctor Strange, the story of world-famous neurosurgeon Dr. Stephen Strange whose life changes forever after a horrific car accident robs him of the use of his hands. When traditional medicine fails him, he is forced to look for healing, and hope, in an unlikely place – a mysterious enclave known as Kamar-Taj. He quickly learns that this is not just a center for healing but also the front line of a battle against unseen dark forces bent on destroying our reality. Before long Strange – armed with newly acquired magical powers – is forced to choose whether to return to his life of fortune and status or leave it all behind to defend the world as the most powerful sorcerer in existence.0comments
Doctor Strange is directed by Scott Derrickson, from a screenplay he wrote with C. Robert Cargill. Doctor Strange stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Rachel McAdams, Benedict Wong, Michael Stuhlbarg, Benjamin Bratt, Scott Adkins, Mads Mikkelsen, and Tilda Swinton.
opens in theaters in North America on Nov. 4, 2016.